Director Joe May was so determined to make this a close remake of the German film Mazurka (1935) that he kept a print of "Mazurka" on the set and frequently ran sections of it, to the annoyance of the new film's cast. In addition to copying the German original shot-by-shot in many scenes, this film also reuses the original score and songs.

Warner Bros. bought the U.S. distribution rights to the original German film Mazurka (1935), but shelved it in favor of this remake.

According to studio records, producer Henry Blanke wanted Bette Davis for the lead in this film, and wanted Warner Baxter for the role played by Basil Rathbone.

Lola Lane did a screen test for the role of Xenia.